Jessica Ellis
January 17, 2016 11:46 am

There’s a new high water mark in the workplace/home behavior debate, and that mark is…Cards Against Humanity? Apparently, because seven workers at WTOL-TV in Ohio were just fired for engaging in the very not-politically-correct game while at work.

For the uninitiated, the game in question functions a little like Apples to Apples, but with an adult twist. One player reads out a prompt card, and the others each use a card from their hand to finish the statement in a funny or shocking way. The answers can often end up being sexual in nature, or may just be disturbing or in bad taste.

The Toledo Blade cites unconfirmed reports suggest the fired workers were playing the game over New Year’s weekend while at work. There has been no real explanation of exactly the issue — whether it offended another staff member, if they were playing it on-air (although probably not, as there’d be footage of this), or if they continued to play despite warnings. What is known for sure is that the station has now listed seven open positions after the firings, including for on-air anchors, a meteorologist, content specialists, and producers.

In a statement to the Blade, station VP/general manager Brian Lorenzan said, “WTOL takes seriously its employment policies and our obligation to provide an environment in which all employees are treated with respect and dignity. As a result, WTOL had to take personnel actions this week related to several employees. Due to personnel matters being involved, we cannot comment further.”

While details of the firings have been limited, that didn’t stop some of the former employees from taking a stand. Former anchor Ali Bradley told Buzzfeed News she would not comment on the story, but posted the following on her Twitter account shortly after the news broke:

The station’s former meteorologist, Kimberly Newton, took a more diplomatic route on social media, thanking the viewers for their support.

This is a sticky situation to judge without having the full details; if the employees received no warnings before hand to cease playing the game, it does seem to be a little over the top. On the other hand, management concerned with creating a safe workspace should generally be commended. For now, at least, it seems that workplace board game nights should stick with Monopoly.

(Images via Connie Ma / Flickr Creative Commons, Twitter.)

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